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Early Childhood Caries in 3 to 5 Year Old Children in Trinidad and Tobago

1
School of Dentistry, Faculty of Medical Sciences, University of the West Indies, St. Augustine Campus, Trinidad
2
Faculty of Medical Sciences, University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus BB11000, Barbados
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Dent. J. 2019, 7(1), 16; https://doi.org/10.3390/dj7010016
Received: 8 November 2018 / Revised: 14 January 2019 / Accepted: 16 January 2019 / Published: 7 February 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dental Hygiene and Epidemiology Volume 2)
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Abstract

Background: This study was done to evaluate the prevalence and contributory factors of early childhood caries (ECC) and severe ECC (S-ECC) among preschool children of Kindergartens and Early Childhood Centres in Trinidad and Tobago. Methods: A cross-sectional study was carried out involving 342 preschool children aged 3 to 5 years. The school staff distributed a structured questionnaire to the children to be completed by the mother. Clinical examinations were conducted by calibrated examiners. Statistical significance was set at p < 0.05 in all analyses. Results: The prevalence of ECC and S-ECC was 50.3% and 52.3%, respectively. Dietary and oral hygiene factors particularly with bottle feeding and high plaque levels were major contributors to dental caries in this population. Conclusion: ECC and S-ECC are significant issues that occur in preschool children in Trinidad and Tobago. The development of ECC and S-ECC can be attributed to certain environmental factors like dietary habits and oral hygiene practices. Early dental assessment, broad-based oral health education programmes, increased parental/guardian engagement during oral hygiene practices and greater access to facilities for early childhood caries prevention and management can help alleviate the problems of ECC and S-ECC in this population. View Full-Text
Keywords: early childhood caries; preschool children; oral health; Trinidad and Tobago early childhood caries; preschool children; oral health; Trinidad and Tobago
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Percival, T.; Edwards, J.; Barclay, S.; Sa, B.; Majumder, M.A.A. Early Childhood Caries in 3 to 5 Year Old Children in Trinidad and Tobago. Dent. J. 2019, 7, 16.

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